From affineurPascal Beillevaire. Timanoix is made by the brothers of Timadeuc at the Cistercian Abbey Notre Dame de Timadeuc in Bréhan, Morbihan, France (Southern Brittany). It is similar to Echourgnac another Trappist cheese and it is related to L’Abbaye de Timadeuc (also made by the brothers of Timadeuc), a washed rind cheese similar to Port du Salut.
Timanoix is a semi-soft cheese, made of pressed pasteurized cow’s milk (the label says pasteurized but others list it as raw milk) and is aged more than 60 days. The rind is washed with a mixture of walnut brandy and brine (hence the name – noix means nut).
Timanoix has a hard, finely-textured rind and is a small dark brown (hinting at orange) cheese. The rind has small dots of white and yellow mold. The pate is creamy golden yellow with an edge of dark gold under the rind, and has a few tiny holes. The rind smells faintly of clean warm stableyard and cow.
The pate is fragrant, with warm walnut and a hint of allspice. The pate is firm in the mouth but silky. It has a definite nuttiness with a smoky finish that reminds me of steak sauce. A really unique flavor. Others describe the finish as coffee-like. The cheese has a good acidity and paired well with a very lightly oaked burgundian-style chardonnay; although it did remove the element of smoke.
Try it with a full-bodied ale, Cabernet Franc, walnut liqueur, Tia Maria liqueur or Sherry. The cheese has a meaty/charcuterie-like feel to it – and I think would be at home there. It would also be nice in a sandwich with roast pork or beef.